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A Complaint Is a Gift

In: Business and Management

Submitted By swilson7717
Words 2965
Pages 12
A Gift is a Complaint is a book that will challenge you to rethink complaints, complainers, and your approach on handling, what is a usually, an unpleasant situation. Complaints, as stated in the book, are ”statements about expectations that have not been met. They are also, and perhaps more importantly, opportunities for an organization to reconnect with customers by fixing a service or product breakdown,” (Moller & Barlow, 2008, p. 22). The surface message of the customer doing the complaining often comes across as abrasive and as an attack, but really the customer is willingly giving the company an opportunity to respond and fix the problem, or more appropriately put, giving the company the gift of a second chance.

The authors of the book have redefined complaints as gifts, but to do so those receiving the complaint must learn to separate the gift from the medium, the complaint from the complainer. Being able to separate yourself from the emotion of being blamed is most important to being able to successfully handle all complaints. In other words, we need to stop taking things so personally and learn to portray confidence and consideration. This means gaining empathy for the disappointed and frustrated customer, all a while moving forward as a company. The very fact that the person is showing interest in the product/service and making an effort to complain signifies some form of commitment to the company.

A Complaint Is a Gift reverses the traditional approach to complaints as seeing them as a negative entity, urging companies to view them not as hassles but as gifts that they should welcome with open arms. As the authors point out, our organizations can gain from complaints in many ways, including understanding what is important to our customers and getting ideas for improvements or new products/services.

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